CRLP Fall 2020 Newsletter

UC Berkeley California Reading & Literature Project

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Greetings Bay Area Educators,

We hope you are treating yourself to an extra strong dose of kindness these days. As we head into the subtle change in seasons here at Berkeley, we at the California Reading & Literature Project are also taking some time to to reflect on the monumental shifts that have taken place in education since the Spring.

Similar to all teachers across the state, as the pandemic turned our normal ways of doing things upside down, we also began reimagining what best practices in literacy development would look like for this new school year. We quickly embarked on the adventure of adapting our professional learning sessions into remote formats to best meet the immediate needs of Bay Area teachers, in addition to creating new learning options to address the unconventional demands facing our communities. We started by launching a Sentence Deconstruction and Distance Learning webinar that was not only well received and attended, but also a lot of fun to create! In addition, we transformed our Dyslexia Guidelines study session and CRLP Results: Foundational Skills into remote trainings, diving head first into discovering what works and what doesn’t in this new remote world, and embracing the journey!

We also collaborated with our subject-matter colleagues at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education (GSE) to offer a series of free webinars around topics unique to the remote teaching landscape. The scramble to create timely and responsive webinars resulted in some powerful collaborations with other on-campus professional development providers. Together with our GSE team, we were able to offer the following learning opportunities to our larger community of Bay Area educators:

  • Ask a Public Health Expert: COVID 19 Informational Webinar for Educators
  • Student Panel: Reflections on Learning in Times of Crisis
  • Teacher Panel: Reflections on Learning in Times of Crisis
  • Design Challenge: Imagining Classrooms in Fall 2020

As with the start of every school year, we are also excited to celebrate the work of our partner districts and school sites in service of advancing literacy for ALL students! Below are some highlights of this work and an invitation for our Fall Teacher Leadership Invitational, as well as information about our professional learning opportunities for this school year.

Please don't hesitate to contact us for your professional learning needs with literacy instruction and remote learning.

Best wishes,

George Ellis & Kara Whiston

CRLP Regional Directors

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education

Coming Soon: CRLP Results for Reading Intervention

CRLP is proud to announce that we are currently developing a new iteration of our classic Results: Foundational Skills signature program. The new Results for Reading Intervention is intended for schools who are looking to improve their MTSS model for strategic reading interventions. This professional learning series will allow teams of special educators and reading specialists to collaborate together to address student reading difficulties by streamlining the instructional routines and formative assessments used within a school's MTSS system.


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Molly Coffey-Smith

We are excited to welcome Moly Coffey-Smith to the CRLP leadership team. Molly will assume the role of Program Lead for Special Education. Mrs. Coffey-Smith will be an integral part of our Results for Reading intervention development team, collaborating with regional directors to create and refine our new professional learning series to address the needs of special education teachers, teachers working in intervention roles, and classroom teachers working with students with IEPs. Molly has been an Elementary Special Education Teacher since 1999 with the first 11 years in the Tenderloin District for SFUSD, and since then in Piedmont, California. She started as a teacher leader with CRLP in 2007, and we are thrilled to have her join our regional leadership team!

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Literacy Instruction & Remote Learning

Teachers, are you looking to share your expertise, learn from colleagues, and move your practice forward in service of students in the new virtual landscape? Administrators, do you want to build leadership capacity with teachers at your site? If so, check out our annual Teacher Leadership Invitational!

This year's TL Invitational will focus on Virtual Literacy Instruction and will also preview one of CRLP's latest PD modules: Results for Reading Intervention. Topics will include:

  • Prioritizing Literacy Instruction for Virtual Learning
  • Foundational Reading Skills and Distance Learning
  • The Reading Circuit
  • Decoding Skills for Upper Grades

Details are in the link below. If you are interested in attending, please contact us at

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The Newest Addition to the CRLP Website

Quality professional learning sessions are now just a few clicks away...

In an effort to expand our professional learning to teachers on demand, we now offer a series of free webinars on our CRLP at UC Berkeley website. Our goal is to create a self-directed learning space to allow teachers to continue their professional growth whenever they wish and wherever they may be. Some of the topics you can investigate through CRLP webinars are:

  • Sentence Deconstruction and Distance Learning
  • Design Challenge: Imagining Classrooms in Fall 2020
  • Teachers Reflecting on Learning in Times of Crisis

You can also access additional webinars from our UC Berkeley Professional Development Provider colleagues:

  • Documenting a Pandemic: Past and Present
    (UC Berkeley History-Social Studies Project)
  • Educator Well-being Support for More Calm and Connection Amidst Chaos
    (UC Berkeley School Psychology Program)
  • The Healing Art of Relational Pedagogy in Times of Crisis
    (Bay Area Writing Project)
  • And many, many more...

Contact Us

California Reading & Literature Project

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education

George Ellis

Regional Director

California Reading & Literature Project

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education

KARA whiston

Associate Director

California Reading & Literature Project

UC Berkeley Graduate School of Education